Found my ancestors and grief too.

R.Henry Goins
San Francisco, CA

I am a genealogist. I have been researching my North Carolina family for about ten years now. I found my great grandfather’s family in some notes held at the North Carolina Archives. The family lived in Belews Creek and Sauratown. Sauratown sounds like sorrow. I found a ledger with the name of the overseer of the plantation written in it. When I first read it, it looked like grief. I actually think the overseer’s name was Greif, but I could not help but see it as grief. Grief is here. Grief will not let me go any further until I acknowledge it. Finding grief stopped me in my tracks.

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One Response to "Found my ancestors and grief too."
  1. Grant Hayter-Menzies says:

    Henry, I found grief when I discovered these same lists of human beings, lists which run into livestock and farming implements without the decency of a comma. My grief is that my ancestors bought and exploited human beings, and I have been processing it for a couple of decades. I found great advice and compassionate community in a group called Coming To The Table, a group of folks who descend from enslaved and enslavers. Coming to the Table provides leadership, resources, and a supportive environment for all who wish to acknowledge and heal wounds from racism that is rooted in the United States’ history of slavery. Please do check us out:

    Thank you for sharing your story.

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